The best picture books to gift for Mother's Day

Who am I?

I'm a picture book author living in Los Angeles with my husband and two children. I love seeing the world through my children’s eyes and began writing stories for and inspired by them after they were born. Watching their relationships flourish with their grandparents and the grown-ups in their lives inspired me to write books that celebrate family and foster connection. My grandmas both live overseas and I treasure the time I spend with them. Just like my own children, the simplest moments together are the ones I hold onto and carry with me the most. I love books that celebrate these magical relationships and hope these books encourage readers to celebrate their own relationships.  

I wrote...

A Grandma's Magic

By Charlotte Offsay, Asa Gilland (illustrator),

Book cover of A Grandma's Magic

What is my book about?

“When a child is born, a grandma is born too. Grandmas aren’t like regular grown-ups. Grandmas are filled with magic.”

In this charming picture book tribute to grandmas, a grandma’s magic bursts through the door as soon as she comes to visit and can be seen in every wonderful thing she does: playing, exploring, baking, gardening, and in all the many ways a grandma and grandchild connect. Filled with adorable scenes featuring a diversity of grandmas and their grandkids, this is a book that families can enjoy together. Grandmas will love snuggling with their grandchildren as they share their love and “magic” through cuddles, kisses, and many repeat readings.

The books I picked & why

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You Be Mommy

By Karla Clark, Zoe Persico (illustrator),

Book cover of You Be Mommy

Why this book?

What parent hasn’t felt tired at the end of a long day and wished someone else could be in charge? I am a mom of two adorably exhausting children and know I have. In You Be Mommy, the mom turns the parent-child relationship on its head and gives the child a turn at being mommy. The child reads mom a story, checks for monsters under the bed, and gives her a goodnight kiss. This sweet rhyming read-aloud is filled with humor and heart. It celebrates all that a mother does for her child and the love they share.

Help Mom Work from Home!

By Diana Murray, Cori Doerrfeld (illustrator),

Book cover of Help Mom Work from Home!

Why this book?

Have you ever had children around while trying to work from home? Thanks to the pandemic, many working parents have had to juggle even more than usual over the past couple of years. Help Mom Work from Home! is a brilliant ode to that frazzled, sometimes-humorous often-hair-pulling juggling act. Formatted as a step-by-step guide from the kid’s perspective on how to ‘help’ mom while she works from home, it includes tips such as bedazzling her business cards and helping her relax with some yoga moves. This adorable book had my kids and me in giggles and is a lovely way to recognize and show appreciation for all that working moms juggle. ⁠ 

Grandma's Purse

By Vanessa Brantley-Newton,

Book cover of Grandma's Purse

Why this book?

One of my favorite activities as a kid was digging through my grandma’s purse. I used to play with her lipstick and dig for mints; it always amazed me how much she could fit in there! Now with two young kids of my own, I smile every time I catch them doing the same. If you are looking for a way to celebrate Grandma this Mother’s Day, Grandma’s Purse is a great book to gift her. It features Grandma Mimi who brings her purse full of surprises every time she visits. From jewelry to treats, to pictures, her granddaughter never knows what she is going to find! A sweet story of a young girl who wants to be just like the grandma she adores. 

Tomatoes for Neela

By Padma Lakshmi, Juana Martinez-Neal (illustrator),

Book cover of Tomatoes for Neela

Why this book?

Many of my family gatherings tend to revolve around food and some of my fondest memories are of cooking with my loved ones and of laughter shared around the table. Tomatoes for Neela is an ode to food, culture, and family. It features Neela who loves cooking her family recipes with her amma (mom) – it makes her feel close to her paati (grandma) who lives far away in India. A lovely book to celebrate Mom and Grandma this Mother’s Day that even includes Paati’s Tomato Sauce and Neela’s Tomato Chutney recipes in the back.

Love, Mama

By Jeanette Bradley,

Book cover of Love, Mama

Why this book?

It can be hard when our loved ones have to travel, but as Love, Mama shows, love stretches across distances when we can’t be right next to one another. Love, Mama features Kipling, a young penguin who is sad when his mother has to travel, he knows that she will come back but can’t help missing her. He tries to replace her with pillow Mama but it just isn’t the same. A heartwarming reminder of how strong a Mother’s love for her child is and the perfect gift for the traveling working mama this Mother’s Day.

2 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in mothers, motherhood, and grandmothers?

5,888 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about mothers, motherhood, and grandmothers.

Mothers Explore 52 books about mothers
Motherhood Explore 18 books about motherhood
Grandmothers Explore 30 books about grandmothers

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Stella Brings the Family, Becoming Attached, and What My Mother and I Don't Talk About if you like this list.